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Головна » 2014 » Січень » 26 » EUROMAIDAN. 11 December 2013 police clash with protesters. (VIDEO)

EUROMAIDAN. 11 December 2013 police clash with protesters. (VIDEO)

2014 » Січень » 26
Автор: Майшев
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In the early morning of 11 December, thousands of coordinated Internal Troops (VV) and Berkut surrounded the Maidan Nezalezhnosti (square) in order to clear out all remaining protesters, barricades, and encampments from its periphery in what was described as a 'determined and unexpected crackdown on protesters'.

Temperatures fell to -13C (+9F), the coldest night of the winter to date in Kiev. Several police officers confirmed they had been given orders to clear barricades from the boundaries of the square but not remove the tent camp that has sprung up inside the space.City workers used a bulldozer and chainsaws to clear away remaining barricades from the previous night's advance.There were no immediate signs of violence, and no attempt by riot police to take down camps located within the square itself. Many police were trapped behind protester lines during the scuffles but demonstrators allowed them to regroup and in some instances even handed back their shields. Police later pressed forward again.

The fiercest battle came on the north side of the square, where hundreds of black-helmeted riot police struggled for several hours against lines of protesters who wore orange hardhats distributed by organizers.

Taxi drivers and subway conductors played a notable role in organizing the rise of protesters, spreading the word of the crackdown and in the case of taxi drivers, offering rides into the center of the city. By 5:13 am, the crowd had swelled to 25,000 from 5,000 hours earlier. The confrontation between protesters and police during the removal of barricades is said to have reenergized the demonstrations. The barricades were rebuilt shortly after the departure of the police.

The police stated that the clearing of the Maidan (police referred to it as "territory landscaping work") was carried out at night "to avoid additional noise and inconvenience to traffic and people, since the working week continues". Later that morning Ukrainian Interior Minister Vitaliy Zakharchenko stated "I want to calm everyone down: there will be no dispersal of Maidan [the rally at Maidan Nezalezhnosti]. Nobody is infringing upon the people's right to a peaceful protest. However, the rights and legitimate interests of other people cannot be ignored. The capital city's normal functioning cannot be disrupted."

His Deputy Minister Viktor Ratushniak stated that afternoon, "If the enforcement service goes to the police and starts carrying out the court's ruling, the police will accordingly be involved. If the enforcement service does not request help from the police, the latter will stay out". Witnesses claimed 8 buses of "Leopard" Interior Troops had left deployment from Vyshhorod to Kiev.

In a separate incident, local media reported that a company of 220 Berkut troops based in Kirovohrad refused to accept orders to deploy to Kiev, renouncing the use of force against peaceful protesters. The Interior Ministry denied the reports.

Overnight, activists formed self-defense groups to guard Kiev City Hall. Police attempted to raid the building by mid-morning, which it swarmed with busloads of riot troops; but were held back by fire hoses, firecrackers, and smoke bombs.

The steps to the building were also slicked with ice and cooking oil. By the afternoon, demonstrators on Khreshchatyk, at City Hall, and the Maidan had held off, and then outnumbered police, who then left the area.

Clashes during the raid and a standoff at City Hall sent 30 people to seek medical aid and fifteen to hospital, including nine police, officials stated. People hospitalized with frostbitten feet, head injuries, broken ribs, arms and legs, as well as back injuries. The Kyiv Post reported an instance of a Berkut officer blatantly clubbing a man in a Batkivshchyna party jacket as they advanced. Among the injured was Svoboda MP Andriy Illenko, who was seen in photos with his head bloodied and bandaged. Prime Minister Azarov denied that force has been used against demonstrators, calling the event "clearing the roads". 11 demonstrators were arrested during the clashes.

Protest leader Vitali Klitschko referred to the police actions as "senseless and brutal actions by the authorities" that only would help the number of protestors to go up. "This was the most stupid thing the authorities could have done," said Klitschko. "To clear out the square when Catherine Ashton is in town. People here are determined not to live in a police state."

The incident also drew immediate criticism from European and American politicians, including Catherine Ashton and John Kerry.

Kiev Passenger Railway Station and Terminal D of Boryspil International Airport were closed for hours and reopened after bomb threats made against them turned out to be hoaxes.

Also on 11 December Ukrainian Prime Minister Azarov stated that there will be no discussion about the Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Russia at a next round of negotiations with Russia: "There will be no discussion of the Customs Union and the government is not drafting any documents. I want to stop the rumors right away". He also requested EUR€20 billion from the European Union "to provide conditions to minimize losses for the Ukrainian economy" in connection with signing the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement; adding "The government also favors the soonest possible signing of that agreement".

European Commission spokesman Olivier Bailly responded (the same day) "We consider that Ukrainian prosperity and Ukrainian future cannot be subjected to a call of tender where the highest bidder will get the price". Former president Viktor Yushchenko weighed in on the economics of Ukrainian-European integration, estimating that adopting European standards should actually cost US$400 million.

Talks with between President Yanukovych and the EU's Catherine Ashton and US Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland continued. After their meeting, Ashton stated that President Yanukovych had promised her he would take steps to resolve the crisis in Ukraine within 24 hours. Meanwhile Euromaidan's Denys Shevchuk left the roundtable meeting with former presidents Kravchuk, Kuchma, and Yushchenko, claiming, "This is just a fiction".

By the evening, thousands of protesters worked in large groups to shovel snow into sandbags and rebuild barricades, supported by metal railings and other debris. And President Yanukovych released an address to Ukrainians: "I invite representatives of all the political forces, priests, members of the public to a nationwide dialogue. I'm ready to participate in such a round table".

The address also stated the government would act "solely within the law and will never use force against peaceful assemblies". But opposition leader Arseniy Yatsenyuk responded there could only be talks once their demands had been met; and according to Vitali Klitschko, the police actions of the night before had "closed off the path to compromise".

Klitschko added the next day that if talks (for him this was only possible after the protesters demands had been met) would be held they "should take place with the participation of European representatives and members of civil society".


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